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Transformative Principal is 

May 1, 2016

This is part 2 of my interview with Susie Wise. Susie has had multiple incarnations at the – teaching EX-Tools back in the trailer days, launching the K12 Lab in 2007 with the Nueva School Innovation Lab project, and jumpstarting Media Ops and Hootenanny design for the inauguration of Building 550 in 2008–2010. Back again in 2012 she is leading our efforts to support the movement bringing design thinking into K12 teaching and learning. Susie stumbled upon design thinking when she took a course with David Kelley in 2003 and the experience helped her make sense of the universe. Susie is motivated by the simple belief that humans are by nature designers. Recently a design strategist and innovation coach at Intuit, her practice centers on inspiring teams to use empathy to get to innovative outcomes. Susie has a PhD in Learning Sciences and Technology Design from Stanford’s School of Education and is a co-founder of Urban Montessori Charter School in Oakland. She lives there with her husband and daughter (yes, the one in the movie Babies).

  • Design thinking process
  • New way to seek opportunities and problem solve.
  • Traditional Analytic ways of thinking: see a problem, come up with ideas, do a lot of planning
  • Empathize first, to see what they could see. Ask questions, immersion. Understand the space in a human centered way.
  • Define the problem once you have empathy.
  • Once you have framed what you’re going after, ideate.
  • Ideation is about separating idea formation from selection. Yes and vs Yes but.
  • Prototype - make bite-sized change.
  • Test it out in small spaces to see if you are on the right track in a human-centered way.
  • Do it rapidly. How quickly could you prototype and test your ideas?
  • Mine the failures for learning.
  • Questions to ask after empathy experience: Ask Why 5 times.
  • It can be scary to ask Why.
  • It is about people.
  • Somebody pulls out or somebody pulls rank.
  • Let’s run those prototypes.
  • Bias towards action.
  • Practice on hacking things that are not in school. Hack something in life.
  • Breaking it down into the smallest possible size to get quick wins.
  • Take on more complex tasks.
  • How to be a transformative principal? 1. Shadow a student and 2. put yourself in a different position than you have been in.

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